Spring 2019 Editorial

Welcome to spring and the promise of new growth. Here at Passive House Buildings we are elated to have Alicia Dolce as our new marketing manager. She brings a wealth of experience with the Passive House community—and so much more. 

Fortunately for us, Tad Everhart is not leaving, but instead is transitioning to the roles of marketing consultant and intrepid product news reporter. See “Prefabricated and Factory Built,” p. 17, for his updated story on the growth in that sector.

On the policy front, the city council in New York City has introduced a bill that should set the stage for a massive wave of energy efficiency retrofits when adopted. See “New York’s Path to Scaling Up Passive House,” p. 10, for more on this exciting development. Simultaneously NYSERDA has been working on an initiative to implement and industrialize deep energy retrofits, and we report on one of those projects in “Industrializing Deep Energy Retrofits,” p. 6.

And we continue to see an uptick in the availability of products that are facilitating the construction of Passive House projects. From software updates to prepackaged assemblies, the path from design to move-in dates keeps getting smoother in North America. Even postoccupancy has improved with the proliferation of lower-cost measurement tools, as discussed in “Measuring a Healthy Home,” p. 75.

What hasn’t improved—and that’s an understatement — is the amount of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, which jumped up in 2018, increasing by the second-largest amount in the past 20 years, according to the Rhodium Group, an independent economic research firm. The power sector was responsible for most of the increase. However, Rhodium also estimated that direct emissions from residential and commercial buildings increased by 10% in 2018 to their highest level since 2004.

A big thank you goes out to all the members of the Passive House community, who are doing everything possible to reverse that trend—and preserve our future. Enjoy the articles, get inspired to take action, and as always, please thank our sponsors, whose support makes this publication possible.

—Mary James
Editor and Publisher

Spreading the Word